Nate Jackson / June 10, 2020

A Not-So-Peachy Election in Georgia

The disaster at polling places in Atlanta Tuesday was largely the fault of local Democrats.

“The voting situation today in certain precincts in Fulton and DeKalb counties is unacceptable,” said Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in a statement regarding Tuesday’s polling disaster in Atlanta. “Obviously, the first time a new voting system is used there is going to be a learning curve, and voting in a pandemic only increased these difficulties. But every other county faced these same issues and were significantly better prepared to respond so that voters had every opportunity to vote.” Raffensperger is correct, but the Republican is going to have a difficult time getting out in front of Democrats and their allies in the Leftmedia who are already hard at work painting Georgia’s election snafu and widespread claims of “voter suppression” as justification for mail-in voting. Democrats hope to put both Georgia Senate seats and the state’s 16 Electoral College votes in play come November.

To the press, Georgia became synonymous with voter suppression in the 2018 gubernatorial race when then-Secretary of State Brian Kemp defeated Democrat challenger Stacey Abrams by 55,000 votes. Despite winning 600,000 more votes than previous Georgia Governor Nathan Deal won in reelection, Abrams claimed Kemp had rigged the system and suppressed minority votes to win. If Joe Biden ends up picking Abrams as a running mate (and she is reportedly a contender), it will be because she cashed in so successfully on her supposed martyrdom and because the victim narrative will help Democrats.

Thus, when headlines today are blaring about hours-long lines, machine malfunctions, and absent poll workers in minority voting districts, the implication is that Georgia elections are run by a Republican secretary of state who doesn’t want blacks to vote.

To be sure, Georgia officials, Raffensperger among them, will have to answer for the choice of the particular voting machines that malfunctioned or why there was an apparent lack of training for some poll workers (many of them entirely new because senior-citizen volunteers so heavily backed out due to the pandemic) to operate those machines. Raffensperger aggressively pushed absentee ballots in the months leading up to yesterday’s primary vote, but some would-be voters claim they never received those ballots and were nevertheless prohibited from voting in person.

There’s a big caveat here, however. Commentator Erick Erickson, an Atlanta native, writes, “There was no willful voter fraud or suppression in Georgia yesterday. There was rank incompetence and technical failures. The lines were, in most places, because several precincts in urban areas had to be consolidated at the last minute. They had to be consolidated because poll workers tested positive for COVID-19 or otherwise backed out of operating locations at the last minute. The decisions were made at the local level by local officials, not by the Republican Secretary of State. Overwhelmingly, it was Democrat officials involved in Democrat areas.”

Voting trouble has been happening for at least the last 30 years in Fulton County, which has been among the most reliably Democrat counties in the country for 150 years. And overall, we’re detecting a nationwide theme: The real “systemic racism” taking place in America today is in places that Democrats run and have run for decades.

(Edited.)

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